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Review:

Significant Figures, Error and Uncertainty

Propagating Error: Rules



1.Addition and Subtraction: Add absolute Uncertainties

2. Multiplication and Division


For example
Then

a) First find the relative uncertainty of each factor, or the percentage relative
uncertainty, %:

Or it may be expressed as a percentage

b) Add the relative Uncertainties to give the relative uncertainty of C

c) Convert the Relative Uncertainty of C back to absolute uncertainty (by


multiplying by C)

3.Multiplying or Dividing by a Pure Number


Multiply or divide the uncertainty by that number.
E.g.

Note: ONLY report uncertainties to 1 significant digit. Very important!


Examples: Right: 153.0 0.8
Right: 150. 4
Also (1.50 0.04) x 102

Wrong: 220 0.1


Wrong: 220 2.5

Wrong: 147 10
Wrong: 556.8540.01

Practice Exercises
1.
Change the following absolute uncertainties to relative (%) uncertainties.
a) 36.02 0.02 m



b) 4.1 0.1 cm

c) 17.83 0.01g

d) 2.45 0.01 kg

e) 123.95 0.05 L

2.

Convert the following percentage error to absolute error.

a) 43.00 0.2%

b) 8.32 3%

c) 1.098 0.1%

d) 15.5 5

Significant Figures, Error and Uncertainty


1.

Propagate the error in the following calculations:


a)



b)

c)

d)

e)

f)

Problems:
1) Calculate the density given the following:
Mass = 1.23 0.01g V = 0.56 0.05 cm3



Answer: 2.2 0.2 g/cm3

2) Calculate the density with the following dimensions:


L= 3.42 0.05 cm, W = 1.2 0.2 cm, H = 54.85 0.02 cm, mass =153 2 g

Answer: 0.7 0.1 g/cm3

3) Calculate the concentration in g/L of a sodium chloride solution using the


following data:
mass of beaker + NaCl = 241.85 0.01 g,
mass of empty beaker = 159.23 0.01 g,
volume of water = 250. 1 mL

Answer: 330. 1g/L

More practice problems, very exciting!


1. a) Determine the volume:
L = 3.50 0.01cm,

H = 3.53 0.01cm,

W = 3.55 0.01cm



Answer: 43.9 0.9%

b) If the mass of the cube in 1(a) above is 125.52 0.01g, what is the density?

Answer: 2.860.03g/cm^3

2. Calculate the density of an object which has the following measurements:


Mass = 20.28 0.02 g, volume = 24.01 0.01 mL

Answer: 0.845 0.001 g/mL

3. Calculate the speed of an object if the distance travelled is 200.000.01m in


21.99 0.01 s. (Recall: distance = speed x time)

Answer: 9.10 0.05 m/s

4. A car travels at a speed of 100. 5 km/hr for 3.2 0.1hours. What is the distance
travelled?

Answer: 320 30km

5.

Calculate the quantity of heat absorbed, , by


of water, having an
initial temperature of
and a final temperature of

Use specific heat capacity of water,



Use

mass

specific heat capacity

6.

(Answer:

Calculate the number of moles,


following data:
Mass of paper

of sodium hydroxide, NaOH, given the

mass of sodium hydroxide

Mass of paper
Molar mass of NaOH
Use:

(Answer:

Division Problems: (Very Exciting!)


1. Complete the following, determining the appropriate uncertainty:
a) (12.02 0.08 cm) (16 s 8 %)



b) (3.5 cm 10 %) (2.70 0.05 cm) (16 s 8 %)

c) (12.02 0.08 cm) 2 (3.5 cm 10 %)

d) (12.02 0.08 cm) 2 + (3.5 cm 10 %) (2.70 0.05 cm)

e) [(3.5 cm 10%) + (2.70 0.05 cm)] / (16 s 8%)

f) 4p2/ (0.034 0.004 cm/s2 )

2. Determine the perimeter and area of a rectangle of length 9.2 0.05 cm and width
4.33 0.01 cm.

3. A block of wood measures (12.0 0.5 cm) by (25.1 0.1 cm) by (62 1 cm). If it has
a mass of (9.60 kg 5%), what is its density?



Answers
1. a) 0.75 cm/s 9% = 0.75 0.07 cm/s
b) 0.59 cm2/s 20% = 0.59 0.12 cm2/s = 0.6 0.1 cm2/s
c) 41 cm2 10% = 41 4 cm2
d) 154 3 cm2
e) either 0.39 cm/s 15% or 0.39 cm/s 20%, and if you convert to absolute, youll get
either 0.39 0.06 cm/s or 0.39 0.08 cm/s, depending on when you did your rounding.
f) 1161.13 cm/s2 10 % = 1200 100 cm/s2
2. P = 27.1 0.1 cm
A = 39.8 cm2 0.8 % = 39.8 0.3 cm2 (use precision of uncertainty to decide on
precision of answer)
3. m = 9.60 kg 5%
w = 12.00.5 cm = 0.120 m 4.2%
l = 25.10.1 cm = 0.251 m 0.40%
h = 621 cm = 0.62 m 1.6%
V = lwh
D = m/v = m/lwh
D = (9.60 kg 5%)/(0.251 m 0.40%)(0.120 m 4.2%)(0.62 m 1.6%)
D = 514 kg/m3 11.2%
D = 514 57.5 kg/m3
D = 510 60 kg/m3